Tag Archives: ayuverdic

Craving Curls: Zizyphus Revisited


Excuse the expression please! This was my fave hair shot!

I decided to do my second ever treatment with Zizyphus Spina Christi (ZSC) this weekend. You see, my curls were looking far more like waves and even those were pretty lackluster.

This is how crazy it looked Saturday after being bunned for the morning.

So, with my Terressentials order not yet arrived, I figured I’d dig up the remaining 50g of ZSC I had stashed in the cabinet to see if it would rejuvenate some of my volume and curls in the interim. It really worked the last time that I used it (see here and here), so I figured, “What the heck?”

Last time, I mixed about 50g of ZSC with a cup of water and it was far too much. So, this time, I started with 25g and 1/2 a cup of water. ZSC doesn’t mix as quickly as henna; the powder kind of beads as the water is introduced and stirred into it. But then, when it does begin to absorb the water, it more than doubles in volume and becomes thick, like the consistency of melted marshmallows! It also foams, due to the saponin I learned this weekend. However, despite the increase in volume, I didn’t think that I had enough to coat my hair, so I added another 1/2 cup of water. The instructions indicate to mix it to the consistency of yogurt, my yogurt was a little watery;).

I left it to sit for a few hours (the online instructions indicate about 2 hours, but it ended up being longer than that by the time I got around to applying it).

So, I finally got around to applying the ZSC late Saturday afternoon. I had finger detangled my hair on Thursday night to put it into twists and wore the twist-out in the second picture to work on Friday. So, I didn’t finger detangle prior to applying the ZSC. I also didn’t feel like pre-pooing this weekend, so I applied the mud to dry and dirty hair. First, I sectioned my hair into four and secured three of the sections out of the way with round-tooth jaw clips. Then, I squished the gloop through my hair section by section. By the time I got around to the last section, I realized I was going to run out of the paste. So, I quickly made a little more and finished coating all of my hair (figured I’d have to live with applying it freshly mixed to the last section).

I felt like I could see my loopy S-curls popping already! I clipped my hair up and covered it with a baggie (you don’t want this mess drying in your hair). Then, I went about my business for an hour or two. Oh yeah, and during that time, I revisited this post on Newly Natural and read in the comments that the Somali call Zizyphus Qasil and use it to cleanse the body as well as the hair. The commenter also indicated that Qasil is mixed with eggs and sesame oil to make a hair treatment that leaves hair soft, shiny and bouncy. You know my PJ senses were tingling … cleansing, protein and moisture?!?! Let me find out. But, I digress …

Z-Rinsing and Conditioning:
This mug is a b@#$ to rinse out!! Ughhh. I mean, I knew it was … I didn’t forget … shoot, that’s why I hadn’t done it again since September. I was flicking twigs and flakes out of my dry hair for three or four days after my last treatment. Anywho, I hopped in the shower and commenced to rinsing with hot water. I continuously ran my hands and fingers down the length, slowly detangling and loosening the hair to allow the water stream to get into all the nooks and crannies. I guess I was at it for about 15 minutes.

Post ZSC rinse/pre-DC

Then, I hopped out of the shower and applied my DC, which was Shea Moisture Raw Shea Deep Treatment Masque mixed with about a tablespoon each of honey and EVOO. There were definitely flakes in my hair still. But, I baggied it anyway and threw on my Hair Therapy Heat Wrap for about an hour/hour and a half. It was probably around 10 p.m. by then, so I ended up going to sleep with the DC in my hair (I really want to stop doing that, but it was late and I was so tired again!!).

The next morning, I got the last bit out of my HE HH by adding water to the bottle, shaking it up and pouring it over my DC. Then, I rinsed with warm water, then cool in the kitchen sink using the sprayer. I rinsed for another 5-10 minutes, I guess, to try to get the remainder of the ZSC out of my hair.

I allowed it to air dry to barely damp and finally styled with a modified Kimmaytube leave-in (1 tsp or so of oil instead of 4) and a new styling product that I’ll reveal shortly *evil laughing* … “BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!” Once my hair was dry (ummm … mostly … it just takes soooo long), I used a little JBCO/EVOO to seal and soften it. And voilà!

I was pleased with the results and these pictures don’t even do the volume justice. It’s big! LOL! Also, although I do see a speck here and there, I don’t look like I have a bad case of dandruff this time. Keeping my fingers crossed that I won’t be pulling an Ally Sheedy making it snow at work tomorrow!! LOL!

Now, although I get good results with ZSC, I don’t have any plans on re-upping just yet. I’m hoping that the Terressentials will be just as effective without the half hour rinse cycle and pesky twigs and grit! Anywho, here is a slideshow with some additional pictures.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Now, I’ll probably be wearing my hair out today, but hope to put it into twists tonight. We’ll see if I can squeeze that in between putting together posts for Tuesday!


How do you get your curls popping when they are barely peeping ;)?


Henna and Me: Michelle’s HairStory


Describe yourself in 100 words or less.
My name is Michelle and I work at an art college in California. I am obsessed with reading natural hair blogs and watching YouTube natural hair vloggers.

How long have you been natural?
Well, I stopped relaxing my hair in the mid-nineties. In lieu of relaxing, I would blow dry my hair and straighten it with a really hot curling iron. In 2000, I stopped straightening all together. It wasn’t something I decided beforehand; when it came time to wash my hair one week, I didn’t feel like spending the two hours straightening it and thought, “I’ll do it next week,” but never did.

When did you start using henna?
I started using henna in September.

What made you begin using henna?
Reading about it on CurlyNikki.com and reading Shelli’s henna story. I was interested in the color deposit and the strengthening effects.

How would you describe your first experience with henna?
My first experience with henna was fine. I ordered 200g from Mehandi.com, but only used half that time because the process was a little messy. I used the rest the following weekend.

What type of henna do you use? What is your mix? What is your process?
I use the Henna for Red Hair kit. I just mix the henna with orange juice. The night before, I clarify my hair and mix my henna with the orange juice until it looks like mashed potatoes and let it sit overnight. The next morning, I add some more orange juice until it is the consistency of yogurt, then apply it and let it sit on my hair for four hours. After four hours, I rinse as much as I can with water. Then I use a Suave Naturals Aloe Vera conditioner to help rinse. When I’ve gotten most of it out, I deep condition with Aussie Moist 3 minute miracle, but I don’t rinse it out. I find that this helps with the dryness. The next day, I co-wash with the Suave. One or two days later, I do a regular wash with my Curls cleanser and condition with whatever.

How often do you henna?
Once a month.

How has your hair changed with henna?
I have noticed a slight change in color but not much else.

How do you feel about henna and the process now?
It is not a difficult process but it is very time consuming, especially rinsing it out.

What advice would you give someone who is thinking about trying henna?
Do your research and make sure you purchase Body Art Quality Henna (my sister-in-law received some henna from Turkey from a friend. It caused a violent allergic reaction, which resulted in her having to go to the emergency room). Also, purchase a sample to test to make sure you are not allergic.

Anything else that you’d like to add?
I am on the fence as to whether to continue to henna. I haven’t seen much difference with the exception of the color. I’ll give it two more months then I’ll access my hair.

Michelle sent me her story back in December, so I asked her a week or so ago if she was still using henna or decided to give it up. Her answer:
I think I will stick to the henna for a while. I really do like the color.

I do too Michelle, I do too!

Zizyphus – Greek Myth or Curl Savior?


And the preliminary results are in … Zizyphus may be a keeper! As many of you know, I ordered some zizyphus ($7.50 for 100g) a couple of weeks ago after Michelle of Radiant Brown Beauty did this post about her experience with it. When she contacted Mehandi.com to inquire about amla for curl restoration, they recommended this ayuverdic powder as a better alternative, with fewer incidents of irritation. In the past, I had used amla alone and mixed with henna in an effort to preserve my curls. However, my scalp was NOT having it and I discontinued using it. That is, I stopped until I decided to do a little experiment on my ends a few weeks ago, which I discussed here and here. As I kept the amla far from my scalp, I didn’t have any problems with irritation. However, I also couldn’t see much of a difference. After Michelle’s post, I was interested in seeing if zizyphus would perform better.

Okay, first let’s discuss the mixing and application process. I mixed about 50g of the 100g bag in a plastic bowl with about a cup of filtered water to a yogurt consistency. Zizyphus is green and grassy smelling and was like melted marshmallow in texture when water was added. The water also increased the volume of the powder drastically. It really absorbed and swelled, almost “bubbling” as mixed (I probably could have used less than half of the bag). Now, this is where I had to make a decision. The online directions indicated that the mix should sit for 2 hours, whereas the directions taped to the bag implied the mix could be applied to hair immediately. Go figure! Anywho, I decided to go with the online instructions. So, I left the zizyphus to “marinate” while I ran to pick up a pair of fierce, peep-toe wedge booties that I had put on hold the prior day.

After returning home, I got around to applying the zizyphus to my hair, which was saturated with a Vatika oil and EVOO pre-poo and was thoroughly detangled. I had done some research on the powder and one recurring complaint was that it resulted in extremely dry hair. I always read reviews that indicate this with a critical eye. It often seems to me that many with this complaint often do not regularly apply moisturizing deep conditioners after drying ayuverdic hair treatments. Because I wanted to pre-poo anyway, I thought the oils would provide a buffer for the potentially drying effects of the treatment as would a post treatment moisturizing DC. The mix was gushy and almost slime-like, but in that is was viscous and not muddy or drippy in texture. It kind of “glooped” as I squished it  into my hair. My hair was in six twists and I untwisted each section one by one, squished the zizyphus through, ensuring that my hair was thoroughly coated and then loosely re-twisted each section. I applied the zizyphus to the entire length of my hair except for the first 2 inches or so of roots. Then, I donned a plastic baggie and waited.

About an hour or so later, I hit the bathroom to rinse the stuff out. Yeah … what the frick?!?! Michelle was NOT joking when she said this gook is a mother to get out of your hair. I have little to no problems rinsing henna. With this, I used hot water (as instructed) via the faucet in the bathtub. And I rinsed. And I rinsed. And I added some Aussie Moist and rinsed and rinsed some more. I will say this, as I rinsed the treatment, my hair felt very heavy and thick in a good way. It didn’t feel dry at all. After a while, I gave up on getting it all out and applied my DC as I had found this old blog post that indicated that the last of the treatment seemed to be removed by the conditioner. Michelle also indicated that she was able to work the residual mix from her hair when she applied a styling cream to do twists.

So, after DCing for an hour, I rinsed using my normal technique, blotted dry, applied some DevaCare One Conditioner and twisted my hair into six twists. I could still see little flakes of the zizyphus all throughout my hair. But, it was past midnight and I was … put a fork in her … done. So, I hit the sack with my satin sock bonnet, twigs, grit and all.

I wore the twists to work on Monday so that my hair could continue to dry, eyeing the flakes and hoping no one would be all up in my grill close enough to see them ;). I secured the twists with a couple of Goody Comfort Flex barrettes as pictured above. At lunch time, I applied some JBCO to the bottom couple of inches of the twists to seal (yeah, I carry a little repurposed container of JBCO in my purse … don’t judge! *lol*). I noticed then that my twists were very plump and springy. Hmmm, the prior night, I was thinking that zizyphus might be a wrap simply for the hassle it presented when rinsing. However, now that my hair was mostly dry, I was seeing some of the shrinkage that I have so desperately sought since henna began loosening my curls last year! And, the little flakes seemed to be easily dislodged with a few flicks of the finger. My hair also felt very soft, fluffy and moisturized (I will say that when I use DevaCare One instead of the Kimmaytube leave-in, I get a fluffier, more voluminous set … pH balance and all that jazz ;)).

As I type this, my hair is still in twists and I suspect that I’ll just be pinning them up for work on Wednesday. I’ll take pics of the twist release later this week since, yup … you guessed it, I got my new camera!!

Well that’s it for this loooooong, detailed review. What do you think? Do my twists look more plump and “shrinky” than normal? I think they do. The shine in these pics also seems ridic! But, I think that is just the new camera as I didn’t notice that much of a difference in the mirror;).


Have you experienced a loss of curl due to henna, heat or something else and want your curls back? Have you ever tried Zizyphus? Would you try it? Would love to see what type of results others are having with this ayuverdic treatment!

Okay, if you didn’t get my title for this post;) , if was referencing Sisyphus who was the king in Greek mythology who was condemned to perpetually push a massive rock up a mountain every day only for it to roll back down, forcing him to push it up again.